Archive for Thursday, April 16, 2009

Good news comes for bond issue projects

Gabe Manning, standing, of Manning Construction, recommended the Baldwin Board of Education accept the low bids for the Baldwin Junior High School renovations and athletic complexes at Monday's meeting.

Gabe Manning, standing, of Manning Construction, recommended the Baldwin Board of Education accept the low bids for the Baldwin Junior High School renovations and athletic complexes at Monday's meeting.

April 16, 2009

Signs are pointed in the right direction when it comes to large dollar figures on the Baldwin School District bond issue projects.

Two signs were on display Monday night at the Baldwin School Board meeting. First, bids on the first two projects came in more than $400,000 under the original budget. Second, the district could be in line for a $4 million grant to help construct a tornado-safe supercenter.

“Of course I’m pleased that the bids came in under budget,” Supt. Paul Dorathy said. “It’s much easier to work from that position.”

Representatives from DLR Group, an architectural firm hired for the bond issue, and Manning Construction, the construction management group for the projects, updated the board at the meeting. Doug Loveland came for DLR and Gabe Manning spoke for Manning Construction.

“We got about five bids per bid package,” Manning said. “That’s a pretty good number of bids per package. We recommend going with the low bid on each bid package. We have worked with many of these companies and the ones we haven’t, we contacted references and made sure their bids qualified. We will be working with all of the companies throughout the process.”

The school board approved the recommended low bids with a unanimous 7-0 vote. The Baldwin Junior High School renovations approved bids that were around $400,000 less than the proposed cost of $1,235,726.

Those renovations include a new heating and cooling system, new roof to part of the building and improvements to the corridors in sections of the building.

“We are so pleased the bids came in low,” School Board President Alison Bauer said. “We would like to do all of the alternates we can, because we had some really attractive things that were packaged in there. Hopefully, the bids will keep coming in low.”

The athletic complexes bids also came in lower than expected, but only by about 1 percent. The bids totaled $2,759,984 and the original estimate was $2,783,045.

Those bids include the new baseball and softball field complex near Baldwin Elementary School Intermediate Center and the new practice track facility north of Baldwin High School.

Board Member Scott Lauridsen asked why the athletic bids didn’t come in as far under budget as the BJHS renovations. Dorathy and Loveland said there were two reasons for the differences.

They said, first, the BJHS project was slightly scaled back, because part of the area that was to be improved will be under construction when the new performing arts center is attached to the building. The second reason is that a concessions building and track surfacing were added to the athletic bids.

The other big news out of Monday’s meeting was the potential grant money from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for the new performing arts center. The school board has agreed to build safe rooms in the new building and the new Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center.

The architects are saying the performing arts center building might become one large safe room, which will be able to withstand tornadoes.

“Approximately, what’s been applied for is $4 million,” Dorathy said. “That would be 75 percent of the funding to build this super structure that protects about 1,800 people from tornadoes. We are getting significantly more for this project than we would have, thanks to the FEMA grant.”

Planning of the auditorium is still in preliminary stages, while the new BESPC is slightly further along. Loveland did say he wants to bid the land work for the new school before the rest of the project is bid this summer.

“Good news. This is great news,” Bauer said.

Comments

NanCrisp 5 years, 8 months ago

Now they are beginning to use their heads. You see, bloggers, if you just go along with whatever is thrown at you, you don't make your school district and school board work very hard. Especially in this economy, they all need to be working VERY hard. We've a long way to go yet, but this is a "glimmer of hope."

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Bloggerboo 5 years, 8 months ago

Oh, now Nancy is on board! Get over yourself Nancy. This is exactly what the board, Vote Yes! group, and I said all along. That the bids would likely come in lower, and that with the FEMA grant (which we all found out about before the election) it would make this a no-brainer.

Not to mention, you appear to be a complete lunatic. What the hell does this mean? "You see, bloggers, if you just go along with whatever is thrown at you, you don't make your school district and school board work very hard."

For starters, if you don't think Mr. Dorathy is a hard worker, you don't know the man. Why don't you go meet him and talk with him for a bit. Find out what kind of a worker he is.

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beevo 5 years, 8 months ago

Mr. Dorathy working hard has nothing to do with the bids coming in under the original budget. Now with the bids at a lower price will it reduce the amount of money needed for the overall project?

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bc 5 years, 8 months ago

"Mr. Dorathy working hard has nothing to do with the bids coming in under the original budget."

If Mr. Dorathy hadn't worked to push the projects along to get them bid out now, then we could be paying more a few months from now if they had dragged their feet. So I'd argue that Mr. Dorathy working hard has something to do with the successful bids, maybe not all to do, but certainly leadership and direction from him has certainly helped with the timing of things.

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Bloggerboo 5 years, 8 months ago

Well, Beevo, I tend to agree with BC in response to your suggestion that Mr. Dorathy working hard has nothing to do with the bids...but I only brought it up because of the bizarre statement made by NanCrisp.

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